Saturday, July 30, 2016

Announcing the "Neighbors" Series.

First of all, let me apologize for the lack of blog posts over the last week. I thought I had posts scheduled through the end of the month, but when I logged in last night, I discovered that I'd stopped a little shorter than I thought.

I will continue posting a few more pictures from my Oregon and Washington trip, but I will schedule those to run about every third or fourth post for the time being.

In genealogy, we always hear about the importance of researching the neighbors of our ancestors. When I first began my research, the common advice (back in the days of microfilm rolls instead of digital images) was to record the 10 people before and 10 people after one's ancestor's entry. I occasionally have heard a speaker extend this to 20 people in either direction. I generally compromise and go with about 15 as I've often spotted people just beyond the 10 that I knew were very connected to my ancestor.

My new series will focus on the neighbors of my ancestors. The blog will provide me with a means to shore up some of the research. Although I will not strive to research the neighbors at the same level of depth that I research my actual ancestors, I will probably dig a big deeper into each of them than I have in the past.

The hardest task, of course, was choosing which ancestor and which census year comes first. 

I decided to start with the census year selection first. My choice is 1880. I'll probably have to use the 1840 census for some persons, but the 1850 to 1870 censuses will be there for the backwards journey. I'll have to deal with the absences of the 1890 census in going forward, but the censuses and records from 1900 forward give more and more information. The censuses used, of course, will vary depending on the age of the neighbor in 1880.

I decided to begin with my maternal grandmother's father, Dock Hans Hester. When selected him, I knew I would end up with a lot of cousins and associates when selecting him which would provide excellent insight for readers into the importance of researching the neighbors. Many of these people are probably already in my genealogical database, but I suspect I will discover new things on each.

Although my ancestor, Dock Hans Hester was born in 1851, the 1880 census is the first in which he appears. The family lived in the "Lost Corner" area of Monroe County, Mississippi and was missed by enumerators in both the 1860 and 1870 censuses. I have read through the censuses for both Monroe and Itawamba Counties in 1860 and Monroe, Itawamba, and Lee (which was formed in 1866) for 1870. They just are not there. By 1880, Dock was already married. He married Mary Ann Harris on 20 Nov 1877 in Lee County, Mississippi.1 Dock, Mary Ann, and their daughter Georgia A. resided in Boyds Precinct, Monroe County, Mississippi in 1880.2 Although probably residing in the previous household, 16-year-old Watt Rawlins who boards is actually the person listed on the line with the dwelling and family number. He will be one of the persons researched in the series.

The neighbors (mostly head of household) by dwelling/family numbers:

114 - J. B. Hester; also residing in the house as a boarder is Watt Rawlins
112 - M. L. Morris; also residing in the house is Mrs. M. R. Wilson, his mother-in-law, and some of her children
109 - H. B. Ridings; also servants Lucinda Thomas and Sam Estes
108 - Jo Thomas
107 - J. D. Ridings
106 - Lee Jones
105 - J. M. Ridings
104 - H. Swinigen
103 - John Williams
102 - D. Ridings; also servant Jane Thomas
101 - O. G. Loveless
100 - J. D. Loveless; also sister-in-law F. J. Sterling

116 - Peter Lucas
117 - Patsey Bradley
118 - Sallie Lucas
119 - Thomas Gray
120 - G. W. Green
121 - J. D. Conwill
122 - J. F. Conwill
123 - J. W. Cook
124 - H. A. Black
125 - Bluford Hughs; also daughter-in-law S. J. Herndon
126 - Y. J. Conwill
127 - Mrs. N. F. Conwill; also boarder Nancy Gray
128 - J. C. Rawlins
129 - Jim Houston; also brother-in-law Steve Shumpert
130 - Mrs. A. Rhudy

I'll begin the series by researching those in households prior to Dock by order of proximity and then move to the ones residing after him.

1 Photocopy of D. H. Hester-Miss M. A. Harris marriage bond, Lee County, Mississippi marriage books, 20 Nov 1877. Incomplete citation in database that needs to be corrected; also "Mississippi Marriages, 1776-1935," database, Ancestry ( : accessed 30 July 2016), entry for D. H. Hester-Miss M. A. Harris, 20 Nov 1877; citing Hunting For Bears, Mississippi Marriages, 1776-1935 (Provo, Utah: Ancestry, 2004).
2 1880 U.S. Federal Census, Monroe County, Mississippi, population schedule, Boyds Precinct, SD 1, ED 139, p. 294A (stamped), p. 11 (written), dwelling 115, family 115, lines 25-27, Dock Hester family; digital image, FamilySearch ( : accessed 30 July 2016); citing National Archives microfilm publication T9, roll 658.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Portland Women's Forum and the Columbia River Gorge

Portland Women's Forum was on the road to Vista House and offered some good views of the Columbia River Gorge as well.

Portland Women's Forum sign
Samuel Hill Monument

Columbia River Gorge from Portland Women's Forum

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Columbia River Gorge and Vista House

I wasn't exactly certain what to expect from the Columbia River Gorge. I think I expected it to be more "rugged" than it was. One of the best places to view the Gorge is at Vista House.

Vista House sign with the Gorge in the background
Vista House, as you can see, is an impressive structure.

Vista House
From this location, you can look out on the Columbia River Gorge.

Looking Northeast of Vista House
Closeup looking northeast of Vista House
Looking northwest of Vista House

It's a bird!

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Horsetail Falls and Bonneville Lock and Dam

Back to my series on my Oregon and Washington trip last month.

Several other waterfalls were in the vicinity of Multnomah Falls. My favorite was Horsetail Falls.

Horsetail Falls

I traveled on down the highway to the Bonneville Lock and Dam area.

Bonneville Dam
Bonneville Lock area

There were also some lovely flowers in the area of the lock and dam!

Beautiful Wildflowers
They also had a fish ladder where you could view some of the fish. The green-tinting to the glass made it impossible to really take good photographs of the fish making their way through the Columbia River. They did have a nice piece of art depicting the fish ladder at the hatchery.

Fish sculpture

Thursday, July 14, 2016

A Vietnam Casualty

As I read the online newspaper, I discovered distant cousins tried to rename the road on which my maternal grandparents lived for most of their married life (and my grandmother's parents before that). Descendants of Carlos Leroy "Bo" Tartt, a person about the age of one of my brothers who was a casualty in the Vietnam War, wanted the road named in honor of him and for the family who resided on the road.1 Carlos was the son of Clarence L. Tartt and his wife Marvelle Jean Lyle Tartt.2 They lived on Blackcat Bottom Road, just below what was B and B Cleaners back in the days I was growing up.

I was curious as to whether or not I could tie Carlos in with my grandmother's "Aunt Dollie" who married James M. Tartt on 25 August 1881 in Monroe County, Mississippi3 and then his brother Enos on 12 December 1893 in Monroe County4 or not. I decided to explore.

Clarence appears in the 1940 Monroe County, Mississippi census as the ten-year-old son of Edgar and Sadie Tart.5 Edgar appears on the 19006 and 19107 censuses as the son of John Chesley Tart, Jr. and his wife M. Alice. In the 1870 census, John C.  Tartt, Jr. along with brothers Enos and James appears as the son of John Chesley Tartt and his wife Elizabeth "Liza" Conwill.8 This means that Carlos was not directly related to me through Dollie. Dollie's children, however, would be related to this Vietnam "hero."

1 Emily Tubb, "City Rescinds Name Changing of Blackcat Bottom Road," Monroe Journal (Amory, Mississippi), 14 July 2016 ( : accessed 16 July 2016).
2 Clarence L. Tartt, obituary, Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal (Tupelo, Mississippi), 25 Feb 2009 ( : accessed 14 July 2016).
3 Monroe County Mississippi Marriages (1821-1921) (s.l.: s.n, n.d.), Vol. 2, p. 261; Evans Memorial Library, Aberdeen, Monroe County, Mississippi; also Monroe County, Mississippi, Marriage Book ___, J. M. Tartt and Della A. Hester, 25 August 1881. A photocopy of the marriage record is in my possession, but it is not cited properly so I am unable to provide the book and page number. Something to add to the "to do" list.
4 Monroe County, Mississippi, Marriage Book __, E. A. Tart and Dolly Tart, 12 Dec 1893. A photocopy of the record is in my possession but is not properly cited with book and page number.
5 1940 U.S. Federal Census, Monroe County, Mississippi, population schedule, Beat 5, SD 1, ED 48-31, p. 438B (stamped), sheet 12B (written), visit 217, lines 50-55, Edgar Tart family; digital image, FamilySearch ( : accessed 14 July 2016); citing National Archives Microfilm Publication T627, roll 2050.
6 1910 U.S. Federal Census, Monroe County, Mississippi, population schedule, Boyds Precinct, SD 1, ED 124, p. 72A (stamped), dwelling 5, family 5, lines 21-26, John C. Tart family; digital image, FamilySearch ( : accessed 14 July 2016); citing National Archives microfilm publication T624, roll 752.
7 1900 U.S. Federal Census, Monroe County, Mississippi, population schedule, Beat 5, East of Aberdeen & Richmond Road, SD 1, ED 81, p. 270B (stamped), sheet 3B (written), dwelling 58, family 58, lines 87-95, J. C. Tart Junior family; digital image, FamilySearch ( : accessed 14 July 2016); citing National Archives microfilm publication T623, roll 822.
8 1870 U.S. Federal Census, Monroe County, Mississippi, population schedule, Township 12, Smithville post office, p. 218B (stamped), sheet 64 (written), dwelling 414, family 467, lines 6-15, John C. Tartt household; digital image, FamilySearch ( : accessed 14 July 2016); citing National Archives microfilm publication M593, roll 741.

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Multnomah Falls

Oops! The "busy"-ness of the past week caught up with me, and I forgot to post yesterday. You'll get the intended post today. I'll try to post something a little more of a genealogy nature next time but today you get to enjoy more of my trip to Oregon and Washington.

On Monday, June 13 I left Portland fairly early in the morning and headed to Multnomah Falls. As you can see, they were breathtaking!

View from Parking Lot

Multnomah Falls

Good view of lower cascade

The upper cascade

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

A Cheerful and Comfortable Faith

Winner, Lauren F. A Cheerful and Comfortable Faith: Anglican Religious Practice in the Elite Households of Eighteenth-Century Virginia. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2010.

With strong interests in genealogy, Christianity, and history, this book by Lauren Winner appealed to me. I have read a couple of Winner's books designed for lay audiences, but this particular volume has a decidedly academic tone. Winner explores the role the church, specifically the Anglican Church, played in the lives of 18th century well-to-do Virginia families. Many of these families were the owners of plantations and as such, exerted some influence over the lives of those who worked on their plantations. However, the influence did not always extend to the slaves as other groups such as the Baptists were more welcoming in sharing their services with those of color and even allowing them to serve as delegates. We see the influence extending from such things as embroidered samplers to meals and diet influenced by the church calendar to prayer life and even to the recording of genealogical information in Bible or other religious books. Probably my favorite part of the book was the discussion of the recording of genealogical information. Winner did extensive research for the volume, and it is well-documented. I intend to go through her extensive bibliography to locate sources I may find useful in my genealogical research. The biggest flaw of the book is in its readability, or lack thereof. This is not problematic for academics, genealogists looking for social history background to incorporate in their narratives are likely to ignore it. This is a book I intend to keep for reference.

Sunday, July 03, 2016

Portland Japanese Gardens

I recently traveled to the Pacific Northwest. The main purpose of my trip was to attend and present at the Association of Christian Librarians Conference which was being held at George Fox University in Newberg, near Portland. Since I had never been to Oregon or Washington, I decided to stay a little longer to do some sight-seeing. It was difficult to pick and choose what to visit and what would have to wait for another trip in the future (if I ever make it back).

My plane landed around noon Pacific time so it was too early to check into the hotel. I decided to visit Portland Japanese Gardens first. I'll include a few photos I took there.

A pagoda-like statue

One of my favorite scenes.

Supposedly the most photographed tree in the garden.

Feeding time for the coy.

Lovely flowering plants.
Beautiful flowers.

Man-Made Waterfall

View of Mount Hood from the Garden.

That was actually my second glimpse of Mount Hood that day. The first was up close and personal from the plane as we flew over it en route to PDX.

I enjoyed my visit to the Portland Japanese Garden and encourage others to visit when in the area.